Rep. Ted Budd Leads NC Delegation Letter Opposing Vaccine Mandate for Police Officers

Washington, D.C. – Today, Rep. Ted Budd (R-NC) led the entire North Carolina Republican delegation in the Senate and House to send a letter to President Joe Biden and Department of Labor Secretary Marty Walsh demanding that they withdraw the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) vaccine mandate given its impact on North Carolina police officers.

The letter is endorsed by the North Carolina Fraternal Order of Police.

NC Fraternal Order of Police President Randy Hagler said in a statement:

“On behalf of law enforcement officers statewide, I want to thank Congressman Budd and all the members who signed on this important letter. It’s refreshing that North Carolinians are well represented by such pro-law enforcement members of Congress. Law enforcement is at a critical juncture with staffing and this is certainly not the time to mandate law enforcement professionals to have the Covid vaccine without consultation of their doctors and medical professionals.”

Other signers on the letter include:

  • Senator Richard Burr

  • Senator Thom Tillis

  • Rep. Virginia Foxx

  • Rep. Patrick McHenry

  • Rep. Richard Hudson

  • Rep. David Rouzer

  • Rep. Dan Bishop

  • Rep. Greg Murphy, M.D.

  • Rep. Madison Cawthorn

The full text of the letter is below:

Dear President Biden and Secretary Walsh:

We write to express our concern about how your vaccine mandates will negatively impact law enforcement officers in North Carolina. We write specifically in regards to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS)  that applies to state and local law enforcement in 28 states and territories with approved state plans, including North Carolina.

As directed by the court’s nationwide stay, the Department of Labor is pausing implementation of the OSHA ETS while litigation continues.  We encourage you to use this pause to review its effects on state and local law enforcement personnel. While the White House is advertising the ETS as a mandate for private employers,  state and local government employees in states such as North Carolina—who have chosen to exceed OSHA’s minimum safety and health standards to include protection of state and municipal workers—are impacted. At 100 employees, this mandate will cover all but the smallest city and county governments, including their police officers. We are hearing from agencies across our state about officers considering resignation instead of taking the vaccine. At a time when recruiting for new police officers is declining, our communities cannot afford to have fewer officers on the force. 

Law enforcement officers have been on the front lines of this pandemic. They cannot telework, they cannot socially distance, and they are essential to our communities. The ETS does not account for the potential of natural immunity from individuals who have already recovered from Covid-19.  In the case of law enforcement officers, the mandate could lead to staffing challenges at police agencies and diminish public safety. This is an unacceptable result. OSHA continues to accept public comment on a proposed rule to mandate vaccines. We respectfully suggest this regulatory action is counterproductive and should be withdrawn. Further, OSHA should accept that the ETS is legally flawed and accept the injunction as a permanent action.

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